Bradley reaches the 100-mile marker - with five minutes to spare
Bradley Earwaker embarked on an 100-mile race from Winchester to Eastbourne. He trained in Hastings throughout of lockdown, including a personal challenge named ‘100 Days of Happy’. Here is his account of the event...
Waking up in Winchester on the day of my debut 100 was daunting and mind-numbing. The clock started ticking just after 5am watching the rising sun, banking some easy miles.
My cousin and I settled in to a gentle on and off walk/run routine where we ran small intervals of up to five minutes.
It was going well until we arrived at the 61-mile check point at 11pm, where my cousin made the hard decision to pull out of the race with excruciating shin pain. I needed to borrow a new bag after mine was damaged and was grateful to a kind volunteer, Matt Wainwright, who lent me his. But I felt less lucky knowing I had to carry on for 39 miles on my own.
Powering on up the hills, I needed to buy back time after spending too long at the aid station. I was worried I didn’t have enough of a buffer to allow for fatigue in the final miles.
I tried to stay focused despite my body begging that I stopped.
Overtaking many runners was a healthy sign I was covering good ground.
The next major checkpoint was at Housedean Farm (76.6miles) allowing a change of shoes and a carb load. Legs torn to pieces, and tears rolling down my face, I had to keep moving.
Some experienced trail runners kept me on pace and I stayed with for a few hours, chatting and laughing.
I arrived at Jevington – 96 miles in – and was advised I had just over an hour to get to the finish, a pace I never thought I could find after nearly 29 hours.
I somehow got back into a run while on a call to my parents who were at the finish line. I gave it everything and my finish time was 29:55:14.